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Police: No child kidnapped near Lake Olmstead; 'suspicious situation' instead

Tuesday, Aug 12, 2014 11:48 PM
Last updated Wednesday, Aug 13, 2014 1:56 AM
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Reports of an alleged kidnapping from an area playground near Lake Olmstead drew scores of Richmond County deputies and investigators in a heated search for a reportedly missing 2-year-old girl Tuesday evening before officials later called it a “suspicious situation” instead.

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  DOUG STUTSMAN/STAFF
DOUG STUTSMAN/STAFF

About 8:53 p.m., the sheriff’s office was told a man had taken a child from Lake Olmstead Park and was last seen running with the child towards the nearby stadium, according to Richmond County police dispatch. The child was reported as wearing a pink jumper outfit with her hair in a ponytail and sporting several multi-colored bows. The suspect was described at the time as a black man wearing black shorts and a white T-shirt.

But after searching the area in and around the stadium and Lake Olmstead itself for nearly two hours, Richmond County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Monica Belser told The Chronicle “the situation may be more minor than we initially thought. We can’t give any additional details other than the first report was probably more significant than what really took place.”

Belser then issued a news release at 11:04 p.m. confirming no abduction had in fact taken place and no child had been reported missing.

“Deputies and Supervisors conducted preliminary investigations to determine that a child abduction had not occurred, nor has any child been reported missing,” Belser said in the release. “No credible information has been provided to the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office at this time. Investigators were able to conclude this incident was a suspicious situation.”

According to police dispatch, an unidentified “witness” earlier in the evening said they saw the child “kicking and screaming and saying ‘this is not my daddy.’”

But nearby resident Britney Johnson said she never saw or heard any disturbance - until all the police cars arrived.

“I’ve been sitting on my porch since 7:45 p.m. and I didn’t see anything suspicious,” Johnson said. “Next thing I know, all these cops are outside of my house. But like I said, I didn’t see the suspect or the child go by.”

Comments (5) Add comment
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GeorgiaCarolina
168
Points
GeorgiaCarolina 08/13/14 - 12:27 am
12
0
Child was last seen riding a black domesticated mountain lion

Child was last seen riding a black domesticated mountain lion

whyme
1810
Points
whyme 08/13/14 - 12:45 am
7
0
this is getting old

I hope this isn't going to be a trend, making false reports to get the public stirred up and sending the police out for no reason. Crying wolf one too many times and then when the police aren't available for a real crime, folks will be up in arms. Grow up, people.

IBeDogGone
3014
Points
IBeDogGone 08/13/14 - 06:45 am
7
0
Unidentified Witness

The unidentified person reporting this if it truly was not an abducted child should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law as well as the man who reported the lion missing. There are enough real situations that need attention!

Dixieman
14943
Points
Dixieman 08/13/14 - 07:01 am
5
0
What is missing

in this case and the domesticated mountain lion case is common sense.

Mike.Rosier
23
Points
Mike.Rosier 08/13/14 - 07:09 am
4
0
Unfortunately, these sorts of

Unfortunately, these sorts of things do happen from time to time. I am sure we will be following up on things with members of law enforcement, as they certainly do not like having their time wasted any more than we do. Especially so with elements in which the public may be in danger (as was the case with the reported Mountain Lion and again with the reported kidnapper). We should be able to shed some additional light on this incident later today.

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